Monday, March 29, 2010

Guest Post on DiabetesMine Today (and other writing super-action)

I am trying not to be all puffed up with pride, but I can't help myself. I keep talking about how I want to do more writing, and I am the guest blogger at DiabetesMine today! What about?

It's about how it feels to take a lot of insulin.

See that canister? Load 'er up, boys, Hannah needs a bolus!!

Add ImageAlso, on the "I Am Going to Be an Internet-Famous Writer" tip, you will be finding my writings over at Paper Spaceships on a soon-to-be really regular basis. It feels good being back in the nerdy pop-culture business again. My piece on successful (and unsuccessful) movie snark went up yesterday.

I hope this is a sign of many things looking up. Happy, positive, awesome things.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Should You Sell Your Test Strips?

Okay, friends with diabetes. I know these economic times can be tough, but I think I just found a new way to make some extra cash that makes me deeply uncomfortable: selling your extra unused test strips.

I was followed on Twitter by an account called "Sell Test Strips", and their page links to Sell My Diabetic Test Strips-dot com. Their Twitter account is a rolling ad for how much money people made off of selling their test strips--for cash! It's one thing to sell your unwanted gold for cash, as all the ads on TV seem to be pushing these days. You don't really need extra gold for anything, unless you are trying to pop out your gold-filled teeth.

Sell My Test Strips doesn't give us much information. Who gets the test strips after you sell them? What are they doing with the strips? Will they be donated to families with diabetes in need? Will they be sold off to someone else for cost, which, um, when last I checked sounds pretty illegal?

At least Cash 4 Diabetic Supplies-dot-com states that your unused supplies will either help a person with diabetes or a pet with diabetes in need; however, this site still doesn't say "reputable" to me.

If for some reason you are bogged down with an excess of test strips, whether they are for a meter you no longer use, from a relative with diabetes who has unfortunately passed away, or you (just like Halle Berry) have found some kind of miracle cure for your diabetes, there are places which will take flat-out donations of test strips and other supplies. For example, Act 1 Diabetes.

Also, the members of the DiabetesOC always seem to be looking out for each other. I have seen multiple examples in the past of bloggers helping bloggers (or readers)!

Bottom Line: if I'm sending my unused test strips somewhere, I'd rather know they are going to go directly to a person who will be using them, without a doubt, then some anonymous warehouse which will send me cash while my test strips expire and can no longer help anyone...human or animal.

How do you feel about selling your unwanted diabetes supplies for cash? Have you been able to donate your unused supplies to someone? If so, where and how did you do it?

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Everybody Just Dance!

Do you like to move it, move it? Is there groove in your heart? Are you finding that you can't, in fact, touch this?

If all of this applies to you, and you own a Wii console, you must definitely check out Just Dance, though I am beginning to think I am the only person on the web who gave a crap about this game in the first place. Let's check the reviews: - 2.0 out of 10

Gamespot - 5.5 (out of 10, I assume)

G4 TV - Didn't even bother reviewing it

Here's the scoop. If you're in it for points or really building up your skill levels, you might not find it here. You may just want to stick with the Dance Dance Revolution lineup. However, I for one am terrible at DDR. I don't think I have the eye-foot coordination. The same goes for Guitar Hero--I have real-life rhythm, but apparently I am lacking talent when that gets translated to button-pushing or jumping on a mat.

Just Dance makes it easy--you just mirror what the person on screen is doing. You get on up and dance to the music. Anyone who has a history of slumber party dance parties will understand the appeal of this game. Anyone who has watched music videos over and over in a sometimes futile effort to learn dance moves will understand the appeal of this game. (At this point your author takes a brief break from typing to practice her Lady Gaga Monster Claw dance.)

I'm sure the appeal is totally lost on hardcore gamers. This is the type of game you break out at a party when your friends are feeling a bit competitive and goofy. You hold the Wii-mote and you dance along with the screen. Kids can do it. Adults can do it. The dance moves themselves can be silly enough that no one can keep a straight face.

But my favorite aspect of this game? I love dancing. I have never taken a dance class in my life. I need more excercise, and by the time I've danced to 3 or 4 songs, I have done 15 or 20 minutes of cardio from the comfort of my living room. I am hoping they will make a Just Dance 2 with more songs on it. Yes, I can just put on music and dance, but the point of having a game means you at least are trying to beat your previous best score. Or you have set aside specific time to learn choreography. You could learn choreography from an aerobics or dance video, too, but with Just Dance, there is no annoying person telling you what to do. It's just you and your Wii, and in my case, also you singing along loudly and breathlessly to "Wannabe" by the Spice Girls.

I give this game 3 out of 5 Insulin Pumps.

What person with diabetes doesn't want a more fun way to incorporate some cardio into their week, even when she can't get outside?

But really, if you're going to call a game Just Dance, shouldn't you have the Lady Gaga song of the same name? "Who Let the Dogs Out" was a really poor substitute, Ubisoft. Come on, there had to be some C+C Music Factory track that would have fit the bill, or another 90's dance classic. Also, I think the warmup is too long and there's no option to exit it. But hey--it's a casual game. It's a workout. It's sleepover memories from my middle school years.

If Wii Fit is getting a bit tedious or you stink at DDR like I do, this is a suitable alternative, if you ask me. It's worth the $25 or $30 it's selling for these days. Rent it if you're a skeptic.

Then try to tell me you weren't trying to do the moves for Katy Perry's "Hot-n-Cold" when you heard it over the loudspeaker at the local watering hole.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Not THAT Kind of Symlin Pen

I work for a university. One of our admissions advisors recently met with a new student who used to work in either pharma or pharma advertising. She commented that she liked his pen, and he mentioned he had a ton of them. He'd be happy to bring her some extras. A few days later, the student returned with a freezer bag filled with pens from various prescription brands.

I have been writing with this ever since:

Why do pharmaceutical reps always have the nicest pens? I made sure to pick and choose carefully--wouldn't want to hand someone a Levitra pen to do their application paperwork at the front desk. Mostly I picked anti-depressant pens like Cymbalta and Zoloft, but when I saw this little guy, I knew I had to have him. Seriously, the marketing interest is kind of wasted on me, but wow, if these aren't all really nice pens! Heavy, shiny, smooth. Ignore that ad on the side and they're perfect.

Funny, when I was last trying Symlin, I never managed to get the pen. I stuck with the vial and needles. Perhaps the universe is trying to tell me something? It's far less useful if I try to jam this Symlin pen into my abdomen, but it does make me smile in some odd way as I scribble out Post-It note reminders to myself and sign off on transcripts. I only wish there were some insulin pens in that bag too. Ah well. Back to work.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Become a Fan of Dorkabetic!

It's a bit lame and sparse at the moment, but I finally opened up a Facebook page for Dorkabetic!

Visit by clicking here, oh adoring fans of mine.

Pictures and a few extra goodies to appear once I get home. Yes, I am blogging at work. Shhh.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Will Write for Bylines, Food, Permalinks, etc.

Blog readers and fellow bloggers, I am trying to accumulate some writing clips.

Do you need a guest poster? Are you looking for an article for your site? I am looking for anybody who is looking for some writing. You might happen to know that I'm looking to change up my career path. Well, in this change that I'm trying to orchestrate, I have realized that my most recent writing clip that I'm shopping around is 4 years old!

So if you find a particular post that I've made that would make a great clip to show a potential employer, please point it out to me. If you've got a quick writing job to offer, please let me know. I need practice to gain experience, and I know some of you out there might have some connections!

(kickass freelance writer in training)